Schulman Home Theater

Basement Remodel Home Theater Project

The clients wanted a Theater Room with a high performance sound system and as large a screen as possible. A Crestron music system had been installed in the home was integrated with the Theater system but not an adjacent Disco Room Sound system. The client wished to have lighting control and HVAC incorporated into the design. Finally, the clients had small children and did not want the sound system to be heard upstairs. 


The challenges for this project included:

  • The new Theater room needed to be designed aesthetically so that it fit into the existing lower level space.
  • The existing basement needed extensive demolition and construction that would take place while the clients lived in the home.
  • The existing equipment location was in a room beneath the main staircase. It was not possible to get additional power circuits or exhaust venting to cool the equipment racks and the space was too small for the new Theater equipment racks.
  • Acoustic design enabling high performance sound in the room while containing it to the lower level.

This project was unique because we were acting as the Project Manager. To ensure the design of the room would complement the rest of the lower level, we retained Tom Pervanje of Pervanje Architects, LLC. to design the space around our needs, document and engineer the structural elements, and provide detailed construction drawings. Additionally, Jack Dever from Dever Design Build, LLC was contracted on the project to provide the construction, HVAC, and electrical work.

 Our Theater Designer, Jason Spence, performed the acoustic analysis of the room and provided the architect with our acoustic needs and construction details for sound isolation. The architect created a space that met our needs and accentuated the existing lower level spaces. Inside the Theater room, we treated the wall surfaces with acoustically transparent fabric covering the acoustic treatments.


We chose the JBL Synthesis sound array because the system gives us the ability to tune the room for maximum performance. JBL is acknowledged as the leader in Home Theater Surround Sound systems having been one of the original developers of THX processing. Their sophisticated Room Equalization equipment lets an expert calibrate the sound system to the room acoustically dramatically improving the movie and music experience.

The projector specified for this project was the dVision 1080P by Digital Projection. We utilized an anamorphic lens capable of providing 2.35:1 video format which we featured on a 118 diagonal Screen Research masking screen. This Cinewide format permits the client to view the complete picture as originally filmed. Conventional Wide Screen viewing crops 30% of the picture off of the ends of the picture. 

dVision 1080p projector

dVision 1080p projector

Masking panels drop down to crop the viewing area to the proper size when viewing programs originally filmed in Wide Screen. We solved the equipment location issue by creating a closet built in to the front of the Theater hallway that allowed for 3 equipment racks. We used sliding racks to conserve space. The location allowed for the exhaust of heat from the projector and the equipment racks on a thermostatically controlled system.



We used Crestron InfiNet light switches for the lighting. InfiNet switches are designed to replace conventional light switches with the added benefit of being able to be controlled from the Crestron Control System. Our client can illuminate a fabulous lighting scene with the press of one button. They can turn all the lights on or off with the press of one button. The outdoor lights can be integrated with the security system so that they turn on during an alarm activation. Escape pathway lighting can be turned on in the event of a fire.

We integrated the Crestron control to include the Theater, whole house music, lighting, and HVAC controls.

End Result: The customer was thrilled!


Project Team:

 Project Manager: Jason Spence – Audio Video Interiors, Inc.

 Builder: Jack Dever – Dever Design Builde, LLC.

 Architect: Tom Pervanje – Pervanje Architects, LLC.


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